HISTORY OF SIEMENS BROTHERS
Siemens' interest in electricity began with while laying telegraph lines for the Prussian army. In 1847, he set up the firm of Siemens Brothers in partnership with brother Wilhelm, who went to England to represent the firm and work on his own inventions. In 1851, Siemens Brothers laid a deep-sea telegraph cable from England to France, the first international connection. Many other cables were laid down, and the firm also developed high electric tensions for long-distance telegraph lines.
Siemens saw the potential for producing equipment geared toward the new electrical industry. Later, Siemens Brothers joined with Johann Halske to create the electrical firm of Siemens & Halske. In 1965 the company is renamed Siemens Brothers.
In 1866, Werner discovered and applied the dynamo-electrical principle. Drawing on English physicist Michael Faraday's work on electricity around 1830, this principle is based on the fact that magnetism and electricity can be converted into each other. Though others had devised similar inventions, the Siemens firm led the way in developing dynamos for electricity generation.
Siemens & Halske manufactured the first successful electric train, which in 1879 was exhibited at the Berlin International Exhibition. From telegraphs, cable laying, dynamos, and railroad equipment, the company moved into electric lighting.
In 1880 Siemens Brothers became a public company under the name of Siemens Brothers & Co. Ltd.
At the outbreak of World War 1, on 14th August 1914, all German assets were confiscated by the UK Government and from that point onwards all contact with the German Siemens was severed. In 1917 the Custodian of Enemy Property sold Siemens Bros. to C. Birch Crisp & Co., a financial syndicate from London. In 1919 Birch Crisp disposed of the company to English Electric Ltd.
A.E.I. purchased Siemens Brothers in 1955 thus owning four independent lamp businesses: B.T.H., Ediswan, Metrovick and Siemens. In subsequently dropping these names AEI's lamp business suffered badly.
Last revised: November 26, 2022